I’m can’t exactly pinpoint when my journey began; but what I can pin point is the moment it all began to change for the better. This is when I first made contact with Hannah, and I will never look back.

I was sick and tired of having low self-esteem, no confidence, anxiety of social situations, lack of sleep, poor eating, moodiness and no want or drive to exercise. I knew I had to do something, and until I made the first step, no one could help me.

A friend gave me Hannah’s number and I impulsively contacted her. I knew if I hesitated I would make every excuse to not follow through, so I needed to act. She responded with a questionnaire, and I remember clearly writing my reasons.

· To want to exercise

· To have self-esteem and confidence

· To be a good healthy role model to my children

Nowhere had I noted my reasons to lose weight or weigh less. I never weighed myself or took measurements. This wasn’t important to me. I knew if I worked hard and was consistent with my approach these things will eventually happen. I didn’t want a quick fix, or a fad diet or a short-term challenge…I wanted to make a lifestyle change…for the better.

So, I met with Hannah for two one on one personal training sessions a week at the lovely time of 5.30am! I didn’t sleep well anyway so this was the best time for me and Hannah was happy? Well she accommodated me ha ha I was so scared…I was nervous…and I remember a feeling in my stomach as it churned. I had no idea what to expect. I had no fancy workout clothes or shoes, no idea about what I was doing. Hannah made me feel at ease, she was so supportive, respectful, knowledgeable and encouraging. I for once in my life began enjoying exercise, but I still came home and cried.

Hannah pushed me a little outside my comfort zone to try one of her Reformer classes. The thought of exercising in front of or with other people scared the living daylights out of me. Pretty ridiculous right? Well, Hannah thought I was ready for my next challenge, so I took the leap. Thank you Hannah. I am now an addict to Reformer Pilates. It wasn’t easy, it still isn’t easy, and I’m hoping it never will be easy. But I love it. I have felt my body get stronger. I am learning about listening to my body and being more aware of the movements and breaths I am taking. Each and every movement and breath is meaningful and has a purpose.

I was now beginning to tick off my initial goals…I was wanting to exercise, and was working on the other goals day by day. Hannah told me about a class she ran with a wonderful group of ladies on a Saturday Morning called Base Builders, she told me this was similar to what we were doing in our PT sessions but in a group. The anxiety began to build again and my initial response was no way! But I thought about it and with Hannah’s support and encouragement I went along to my first class. I wasn’t the fittest nor was I the leanest…but that didn’t seem to matter, no one cared…they were all so welcoming, supportive and they were there for their own reasons.

Over a year later, I am now a Base Addict and attend anywhere from 4 to 6 classes a week. Some days still scare me. Some days I still cry. Some days I still get angry. But, each night I am excited about what the next day brings and going to class. At the end of class I am feeling good; physically, mentally and emotionally. I have met some wonderful ladies, that I consider friends now, each of them inspiring in their own right. The days I don’t get to go to Base I find that I am wanting to exercise so I go for a walk, or even a run (I never thought this was possible), and sometimes I do a strength workout. Without intention, I have reduced my alcohol consumption dramatically, and am now looking at my dietary needs.

Lockdown for me was the time I knew I had made it….I couldn’t go to Base so what was I to do. I didn’t want to go backwards and lose all the motivation I had gained. A small group of work friends decided we would message each other every day with our daily exercise, making us accountable. I loved this, I walked each day around 4kms. These walks began just that; walks. Then I thought to myself, maybe I’ll try to run a little, so I did. I walked, ran, walked. Gosh that felt good. So I did it again the next day, and the next. Without realising I was running more than walking and excited about doing it again each time I finished. I found a great workout app that didn’t require any equipment and did that at home too. I had a day off every now and then, and told myself that was okay. But I was missing Base. I was missing the push, the challenge, and the people. Lockdown over, and I went back to work….one parents words I will never forget “how does every person put on weight during lockdown, and you be the only one to lose it? You look great!” I was shocked, a little surprised, I didn’t’ think I looked any different. I knew I FELT better, but look better? I thanked her, as I was told once to never dismiss a compliment but gracefully receive it. This is hard to do when you have no self-esteem, but I am working on it. The following two weeks, I was receiving comments daily. It actually began to feel good, I’m not going to lie.

Consistency is key. No fad diets, no short-term expectations. A little hard work, a little perseverance, a little determination and a little support and encouragement, a little belief. I finally went shopping for some new jeans on the weekend with a friend, again this is something I’ve always hated. Shopping gets me angry, and does nothing for my confidence. But this day was different. 3 sizes! Yes, I lost 3 sizes…! I still can’t believe it. Have I achieved my goals….? Not completely. But have I made a good start? YES! Do I feel healthier? YES! Do I feel mentally, emotionally and physically stronger? YES! Do I want to exercise? YES! Do I want to continue this journey? YES!

Hannah, I want to thank you! You have pushed me to tears some days, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. You believe in me. You have made me believe in myself! I am so grateful, and appreciate your friendship, your guidance and your encouragement.

Base is my happy place!!

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